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Old 04-12-2015, 12:13 AM  
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Real world LS swap budget?

I'm curious to see what it actually cost to swap a 5.3 into a rig, I know their are a million variables but for my sake I am asking while using as many factory parts as possible (oil pan, exhaust manifolds,intake,cutdown factory harness,etc.).

My newest project is a 72 commando, no motor,no tranny or case, no steering, no motor mounts,suspension steering or plumbing. Just a body and frame for a blank canvas to start with.

I have a chevy 60 front, 14 bolt for the back, turbo 350/205, XJ leafs for the back and the orbital valve for the steering so far along with H1 8 bolt wheels.

A local junkyard has 5.3's with all accessories and harness/computer for $500, I'm curious as to what I'm looking at for total cost to get it up and running?

The fuel system has to be built from scratch no matter what, the wiring harness can be done local for $300.

What else am I not considering for cost? Motor mounts are another have to be done deal along with exhaust. I'm just trying to determine if my budget can sustain the various cost I don't know about to get it up and running.
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Old 04-12-2015, 12:28 AM  
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I've helped a couple buddy's do this swap realistically motor for $500 you could probably get it in and running for $1500. Depends on what you need and what your willing to make yourself (headers motor mounts). Radiator, oil pan ,headers ,wiring harness, computer flashed , air filter, fuel system (which is where I've seen things go over budget quick).
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Old 04-12-2015, 12:35 AM  
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Just measuring off a buddies ls, the oil pan shouldn't be an issue with using the truck pan, radiator is gonna be needed either way. The fuel system I feel confident in I've built a couple injected ones on other peoples rigs and understand the needs of it.

My logic is that needing everything as it sits the ls conversion won't be nearly as expensive compared to taking a running rig and doing the same swap.
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Old 04-12-2015, 12:47 AM  
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Truck pan hangs low one buddy said no way could he afford to change the pan until he got it in there and realized it would be hanging way down. Search on eBay for f-body pans gto or cts-v pans. Better and decently priced.
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Old 04-12-2015, 12:57 AM  
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Not sure if you found this thread but there is some decent tech in here.

https://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/jeep-...5-3-jeeps.html
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Old 04-12-2015, 07:40 AM  
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When I did my LS swap in my buggy back in 09. I spent a little over $3500 getting it done. That included a $500 engine, $300 transmission, $400 adapter, $800 to the tranny shop to swap the output and freshen the transmission. $900 for my harness and PC tune. The rest was little crap. Fuel pump, exhaust, hoses, accessory brackets... ext. This was back in 09 too. Some things are cheaper now. Some cost more.
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Old 04-12-2015, 07:53 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midwest Ford Wheeler View Post
I'm curious to see what it actually cost to swap a 5.3 into a rig, I know their are a million variables but for my sake I am asking while using as many factory parts as possible (oil pan, exhaust manifolds,intake,cutdown factory harness,etc.).

My newest project is a 72 commando, no motor,no tranny or case, no steering, no motor mounts,suspension steering or plumbing. Just a body and frame for a blank canvas to start with.

I have a chevy 60 front, 14 bolt for the back, turbo 350/205, XJ leafs for the back and the orbital valve for the steering so far along with H1 8 bolt wheels.

A local junkyard has 5.3's with all accessories and harness/computer for $500, I'm curious as to what I'm looking at for total cost to get it up and running?

The fuel system has to be built from scratch no matter what, the wiring harness can be done local for $300. If you have the know how to swap in the motor, you can cut the harness yourself for $50. I'm color blind and I did it with a little help from my wife. Works great and I'm no electrician. LT1swap.com has all of the info you need and will flash your computer for $70.

What else am I not considering for cost? Motor mounts are another have to be done deal along with exhaust. I'm just trying to determine if my budget can sustain the various cost I don't know about to get it up and running.It's all of the little things that will add up quick.
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Old 04-12-2015, 08:01 AM  
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Just finished my LS swap
Engine $1800 for a 2003 with 30000 miles
4l65e $2000
$900 harness and pcm from BP automotive Very happy with their harness
$1000 for stainless steel exhaust with cats
$1000 for all the little things that get over looked
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Old 04-12-2015, 08:22 AM  
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I am just finishing up a lq9 in a 69 Jeepster. If your talking a complete running engine stand alone for $1000. Minus engine cost, I think you would be close. If your adding transmission cost, exhaust behind the head pipes and non engine related, I would say no. Mark
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Old 04-12-2015, 12:22 PM  
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I will look into the harness I'm proficient at wiring but no expert, I think with a little guidance I could do it myself.

The exhaust,radiator,transmission etc. aren't part of the cost I'm trying to determine because they are going to be the same amount no matter what engine I have.

The dilemma was I had a complete throttle body system gave to me with a cut down harness but I don't have an engine, none of the accessories are there and I believe it would cost more to get an older sbc rebuilt for the same power than it would to drop in a junkyard ls.
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Old 04-12-2015, 06:24 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midwest Ford Wheeler View Post

My newest project is a 72 commando, no motor,no tranny or case, no steering, no motor mounts,suspension steering or plumbing. Just a body and frame for a blank canvas to start with.
A local junkyard has 5.3's with all accessories and harness/computer for $500, I'm curious as to what I'm looking at for total cost to get it up and running?
The fuel system has to be built from scratch no matter what, the wiring harness can be done local for $300.
I'd budget $150 for fuel pump, fittings & mounts. Walbro units can be had off amazon under $90, so this should be plenty. Another $35 for a filter / regulator. A roll of nylon fuel line and a couple quick connects will run you $30. Now you need a tank, which could be $100 to $300 depending what you need and where you get it.

Having done an LS swap, I'll say the wiring needs to be done patiently or you need to outsource it. I rushed thru it twice and while it ran, it looked like absolute shit and was a fire waiting to happen. Doing it again, I'd pay. Maybe add $50 for a tune.

So, fuel & wiring + engine itself = around $1200.

Now add air intake, a flex plate adapter for the 350, weld-in SBC mounts + LS adapters... you might get it done under well under $2,000
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